If you’re a nurse practitioner student, you may feel like you’re being pulled in a hundred different directions. Managing the workload your nurse practitioner program places on you, along with life’s other necessities like earning an income, can be difficult to manage. Fortunately, there is a better way. Choose not to care…about some things, anyway. Successful NP students prioritize what matters and avoid wasting time on things that don’t.
Here’s a peek at what you can let go of to make life easier as a nurse practitioner student.
1. Getting All A’s
Perfectionists take note. Employers will not be asking for your GPA when the time comes to apply to your first nurse practitioner job. Sure, it is important to perform well in school, but in some areas it may be worthwhile to focus your study time and energy on areas that don’t necessarily count towards a grade. And, this may mean sacrificing your normally A+ performance in a few classes.
Clinically related coursework, as well as clinical hours, are arguably the most important thing you will take away from your nurse practitioner program. They relate directly to your future career caring for patients. So, prioritize them accordingly. Mastering the content in your pathophysiology course may mean that your nursing theory paper isn’t quite up to par, but that’s OK.
2. The Comparison Game
Yes, graduating at the top of your class would be pretty sweet. Keep in mind, however, that you’ve already proven yourself. Acceptance to a nurse practitioner program is a sign you’ve got what it takes to further your career. And, in the end, your career path won’t be any different whether you finish 5th or 50th in your class.
Too many nurse practitioner students waste precious time and energy comparing themselves to their classmates. Focusing on your own performance frees up time for you to achieve your personal best outcome, not to mention leads to a lower stress level. So, mind your own business.
It may seem like nurse practitioner school related anxiety isn’t optional. The way you deal with stress, however, is totally within your control. Apprehensive because your classmates all seem to have landed jobs as graduation nears, and you’ve yet to get a callback after submitting a resume? Turn your anxiety into motivation to push harder, seek feedback, and devote more energy to your job search. Has panic set in after earning a less than stellar grade on your last exam? Tell yourself not to fret, stop devoting precious head space to worry, and start studying for your next exam. Anxiety can be paralyzing and sucks up energy you could use to conquer the challenges you face as a NP student.
Making it through a nurse practitioner program isn’t easy. But, it is possible to accomplish the feat and maintain your sanity along the way. Who knows, you may even have some fun while getting your degree. Focusing on what’s important, knowing when to accept performance that’s less than perfect, and keeping control of your emotions and stress level will all help you get the most out of your NP education experience.
What things do you wish you hadn’t wasted time on during your nurse practitioner program?
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